Chapter Twenty-Four: Only Slightly-

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A/N: Banner from TRB on the side there, it's my favourite picture of Tyler tbh it just looks like the character in my head so much. 

     I woke up in the kitchen, propped up against the cupboards. I hadn't even realised I'd been falling asleep at the time. Tyler was no longer beside me but I could hear his voice bellowing through the walls of the flat.

    My sleep seemed to have been disturbed by the loud shouts that I recognised as Tyler and Ash's voices. They sounded like they were in the midst of an argument. I yawned, grabbing at the counter tops to help me to my feet.

    Zombie-like, I made my way through into the living room, which was where the shouts seemed to be originating. My first thoughts were about how close the two of them were, both up in each other's faces.

    Alex was still laying on the sofa, watching the scene play out with half-lidded eyes, like he was fed up of the commotion and he just wanted to go to sleep. I couldn't see Tony anywhere. He wasn't really one for conflict. He normally got out of the way when it was hanging about.

    I caught onto the conversation as Ash shouted, “You're so fucking full of shit, Tyler! You had three fucking years and you bring it all up now! What? Because I'm out? Because I'm happy? You just trying to drag me back here so that you don't feel like a complete fucking failure!

    “Well I'm not coming back, not for you because fuck, Ty, I can't do this with you, I can't.” His breath fell short, head dropping as he ran a hand over his face.

    Tyler looked stunned yet angry at the same time. It was like he wanted to lunge at Ash with the intention of breaking his nose or locking lips. I hoped the latter didn't occur, I wasn't sure I could take it. It was one thing to hear it happened, another thing entirely to see it before your own eyes.

    “Does it mean anythin' t' you at all tha' I fuckin' miss you?” Tyler scoffed, shaking his head and biting at his lip. “It doesn' feel right without you,”

    “Are you kidding me? Fuck off. For almost two fucking years you were a bastard to me. I did fuck all wrong and you just turned against me–”

    “Because I liked you!” Tyler shouted, vein popping out on his forehead, his cheeks flushed red. There was so much hate in the way he said that. “I couldn' stand t' be aroun' you because all I coul' think abou' was...” he silenced himself, a humourless smirk on his lips. “It doesn' even matter,” he whispered, backing down.

    “You had long enough, Ty. You had long enough but you wasted all your time on alcohol and drugs and fucking beating people up. If you really wanted me, you'd have wasted all that time on me instead and you didn't, so don't go acting like you're in-fucking-love with me, because you're not,”

    I'd never heard Ash sound so cruel. He looked vicious, like an attack dog. I truly felt sorry for Tyler as I watched from the doorway of the living room. Tyler collapsed against the wall and slid to the floor, hugging his knees close to his chest.

    I often wondered if that was what he'd always done, right from being a young boy when his mother had had too much to drink and the abuse was right around the corner. Did he shrink into a corner and curl himself up as small as possible in the hopes that she would forget he even existed?

    My heart ached watching him there, broken, scared and alone. I didn't know what to do or say, if it was even my place to go over to him and comfort him. If he'd even accept it, especially being semi-sober, as well as Ash being in the flat.

    Ash wiped away at his eyes, like he was trying to catch the tears before they fell. He said, in a weak voice, “I can't do this with you. I've already lost someone, Ty, I really don't want to lose you but I just can't do this,”

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